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Wellington regional action plan

Wellington regional action plan for Dairying and Clean Streams Accord launched

Greater Wellington Regional Council and Fonterra have launched a Regional Action Plan for the Wellington region. This fulfils a commitment made in the Dairying and Clean Streams Accord.

“This plan is the result of a partnership between the dairy industry, farmers and Greater Wellington, working together to substantially improve the quality of Wellington region's waterways,” said Greater Wellington chairperson, Margaret Shields.

The plan, prepared by Greater Wellington and Fonterra in consultation with the farming community, describes the implementation actions that both organisations will take to achieve the Accord’s performance targets.

“The aim of the plan is to outline our commitments toward achieving the Accord’s overall goal and national performance targets, while taking into account local circumstances,” said Mrs Shields.

“As a result of Fonterra's investigations for the Accord, we know that the percentage of dairy farms in the Wellington region with streams flowing through them is one of the highest in the country. This plan sets out how we will work with dairy farmers and Fonterra to reduce the impacts of dairying on the quality of the region's streams, groundwater and wetlands.”

Fonterra's Director Shareholder Services, Barry O'Donnell, said the Regional Action Plan was an important step in providing clear direction to dairy farmers in the region around maintaining waterways.

“What we've found in working with our farmers, and the other organisations involved in putting together these plans, is that many of our farmers are already taking care in managing these systems. What the plans provide is a clear set of guidelines to ensure that other farmers know how they can manage their business appropriately.”

The Dairying and Clean Streams Accord, which was signed in May 2003, provides a framework for actions to promote sustainable dairy farming in New Zealand. It focuses on reducing the impacts of dairying on the quality of New Zealand waterways and wetlands.

Greater Wellington formed a working group with Fonterra in October 2003 to prepare the Regional Action Plan. The working group also consisted of representatives from the Shareholders’ Council and Federated Farmers.

Fonterra will send copies of the Regional Action Plan to the 250 dairy farmers in the region. Further copies of the plan can be obtained from Greater Wellington. The plan is also available on the Greater Wellington website www.gw.govt.nz.

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